Shey B

Plant Based – The Low Down On What I Eat & Why


Remember THIS post from several weeks ago?

Well there have been some BIG huge changes since then.  My girls were at school and I was scanning Netflix on my TV when I stopped on the documentary Forks Over Knives.  (if you haven’t seen it… you really should watch it).  Forks Over Knives kinda changed my life and maybe I could go as far as to say saved my life.  Or put what I eat under a big beaming light.  Or all of the above.  After I watched Forks Over Knives I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead.  Another great documentary!  Then I watched, Food, Inc, Vegucated, Fresh, Food Matters and so many others.  All of the documentaries can be watched on Netflix or Hulu Plus.  I’ve also done tons of research and am currently reading Omnivores Dilemma and In Defense Of Food by Michael Pollan.

The reason I am such a huge advocate for Forks Over Knives is because of their amazing scientific studies including The China Study.  The basis of the documentary talks about processed food and how bad it is for us.  It also talks about the amount of meat the average american eats (over 200 pounds per year).  It also talks the science of eating plants and how amazing plants are for our bodies.

When I read the Forks Over Knives synopsis it hit me again… I realized then how much processed food I was feeding not only to myself and husband but to my KIDS!  This food which literally over time is poison to our bodies!

Here is the FOK synopsis directly from their WEBSITE.

What has happened to us? Despite the most advanced medical technology in the world, we are sicker than ever by nearly every measure.

Two out of every three of us are overweight. Cases of diabetes are exploding, especially amongst our younger population. About half of us are taking at least one prescription drug. Major medical operations have become routine, helping to drive health care costs to astronomical levels. Heart disease, cancer and stroke are the country’s three leading causes of death, even though billions are spent each year to “battle” these very conditions. Millions suffer from a host of other degenerative diseases.

Could it be there’s a single solution to all of these problems? A solution so comprehensive, but so straightforward, that it’s mind-boggling that more of us haven’t taken it seriously?

FORKS OVER KNIVES examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods. The major storyline in the film traces the personal journeys of a pair of pioneering yet under-appreciated researchers, Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn.

Dr. Campbell, a nutritional scientist at Cornell University, was concerned in the late 1960’s with producing “high quality” animal protein to bring to the poor and malnourished areas of the third world. While in the Philippines, he made a life-changing discovery: the country’s wealthier children, who were consuming relatively high amounts of animal-based foods, were much more likely to get liver cancer. Dr. Esselstyn, a top surgeon and head of the Breast Cancer Task Force at the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic, found that many of the diseases he routinely treated were virtually unknown in parts of the world where animal-based foods were rarely consumed.

These discoveries inspired Campbell and Esselstyn, who didn’t know each other yet, to conduct several groundbreaking studies. One of them took place in China and is still among the most comprehensive health-related investigations ever undertaken. Their 

research led them to a startling conclusion: degenerative diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even several forms of cancer, could almost always be prevented—and in many cases reversed—by adopting a whole-foods, plant-based diet. Despite the profound implications of their findings, their work has remained relatively unknown to the public.

The filmmakers travel with Drs. Campbell and Esselstyn on their separate but similar paths, from their childhood farms where they both produced “nature’s perfect food”; to China and Cleveland, where they explored ideas that challenged the established thinking and shook their own core beliefs.

The idea of food as medicine is put to the test. Throughout the film, cameras follow “reality patients” who have chronic conditions from heart disease to diabetes. Doctors teach these patients how to adopt a whole-foods plant-based diet as the primary approach to treat their ailments—while the challenges and triumphs of their journeys are revealed.  

FORKS OVER KNIVES utilizes state of the art 3-D graphics and rare archival footage. The film features leading experts on health, examines the question “why we don’t know”, and tackles the issue of diet and disease in a way that will have people talking for years.

I realized then the importance America has put on food.  That’s when I decided to change everything.  And it wasn’t a slow change… it was a radical overnight change.  It was me telling my husband (who had been trying to get me to change the eating habits of our family for almost a year) MIKE!  I GET IT NOW!  I GET WHAT YOU’VE BEEN TRYING TO TELL ME ABOUT FOOD!  He laughed and said FINALLY!  hahaha!  I’m the type that has to learn things on my own, and when I do… WATCH out!

I started talking about the way I’m eating on Twitter.  And then started getting responses from people that were curious.  I was asked what I buy, what I eat, do I feel deprived, am I insane?

What I buy?  I eat plant based.  Mostly.  I rarely eat meat… 2 times a week AT MOST.  Most of my diet consists of the following… TONS of vegetables (most are organic), lots of fruits (most are organic), WHOLE grains (breads, etc), Legumes (black beans, butter beans, red beans, lentil beans, white beans, etc), I also don’t drink dairy, I drink Almond Milk (Blue Diamond is my favorite).  Before I found out I was pregnant I was drink some Coke Zero, but even that I DRASTICALLY reduced the amount I drank.  Basically from 12 cans a day to maybe 2 cans or less.  Now I drink TONS of plain & sparkling water.  I do miss my Coke Zero, but my baby is more important.  :)  Do I feel deprived?  Absolutely not!  I am absolutely LOVING eating this way.  I know what I’m putting into my food and therefore into my body and I know, now that I’m pregnant, my baby is getting the very best as well.  Plus I feel great (pregnancy symptoms aside)!  Am I insane?  Uhhh, nope.  Being strict and conscientious about what food goes into my body is not insane.  It’s smart!

I’ve been told that I’m wrong, I’ve been told that what I’m eating is terrible and not the way I should be eating.

I say believe what you want.  But with the amount I’ve researched, I’m thinking that these are responses from people that are afraid of change, and really don’t think the food that is being massively produced in plants and factories are bad for us.  I encourage you to do your own research.  I choose not to let my kids eat anything with HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) in it as long as they’re in my house.  I’m not as strict as you might think though.  I hold an 80/20 rule with my kids.  I figure as long as 80% of the time they’re eating what I cook for them (which I know is perfectly healthy) then the other 20% of the time I really don’t need to worry because it’s not going to kill them to be a kid every once in a while by eating birthday cake, ice cream, etc.  I’m not THAT mom.  They are kids and I do believe they should have those things… OCCASIONALLY!

It’s funny.  After I changed the way I eat I started noticing a lot.  I noticed how much processed food others ate.  I also noticed how much sugar people consumed.  People say (and I’m so guilty of this too) Oh I’m eating really healthy… but are you REALLY?  I had to ask myself this hard question.  The answer was NO WAY!  I was so far from it.  I went through my pantry several weeks ago and pulled out ALL of the processed food… take a look at how much I had… and this is not that much considering that at one time I had more.

All of the above is majorly processed food.  We can’t truly get completely away from all processed food (unless we totally start making every single thing ourselves) but we can get items that are less processed than others.  Look for items that are easy to pronounce on the ingredients list.  Shred your own cheese (pre-shredded cheese contains scary anti caking agents like silicone or wood), shop the perimeter of the store!  DO NOT buy cereals loaded with sugar!  Approximately every 4 grams of sugar is 1 tsp of sugar!  Think about that cereal you’re eating or feeding your children.  Essentially we’re feeding ourselves or our kids candy in a box!  Don’t count the calories!  Count the grams of sugar!   We need to be eating more complex carbs!  They take our body longer to digest.  Simple carbs pretty much go right through us and provide zero nutrients.

I also believe dieting is lame.  We put our bodies through so much crap dieting and we’re usually not eating any healthier… we’re just cutting that unhealthy food in half to shed pounds.  I’ve lost almost 10 pounds in 3 weeks (even being pregnant) and I haven’t been exercising or even trying.  I’m eating so healthy that my doctor couldn’t even tell me what I should and shouldn’t eat while pregnant because I told her how I was eating.  And eating this way is simple!  I’m not saying I’m special or more awesome!  I’m just saying I eat my plants!  And I can not wait for this series to start!  I am hoping you all will love the recipes!  I’m excited to see so many of you interested in eating healthier too!  I love doing things with others!  So we can totally do this together, and best of all?  It’s easy.

Don’t Forget about the new series Stephanie and I are starting TOMORROW!  “What’s In My Grocery Cart?”  We will talk more about costs, and grocery shopping, etc tomorrow when the series starts.


If you have any questions at all, please leave them in the comments!

For now… have a good night!  Stay healthy!



  1. I’m super excited for this series!

  2. I love your enthusiasm! I did vegan for a month (about six months ago) and since then I have added back a few items (not meat, but limited seafood, eggs and dairy), but it is always great to read posts like this to reinvigorate my beliefs about whole foods and veggies! Thanks!

  3. Didn’t I tell you that “Forks” would change you!!

  4. Glad to see you and the fam. are eating healthy and getting rid of that processed crap ;)

    But even I have a coke every couple of days!! HARD to break that habit.

  5. Yay! I’m excited about this!

  6. Awesome! I am so glad to read this post and now I must watch these videos! thanks

  7. I saw you on instagram and had to come over here. I just watched Forks and Fat, Sick Nearly Dead this week.. Forks was such an eye opener that I want to make this change too. I feel like I need to do more research into recipes, what to shop for etc.. I am really looking forward to this series and will be following it for sure. Thank you!

  8. Pingback: Plant Based – The Low Down On What I Eat & Why | Shey B | whole-food-plant-based-diet

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  10. I am glad that you are putting this out there! I could not agree with you more about how bad processed foods are! I grew up in a house where everything was made from scratch with as many fresh ingredients as possible. I continue to cook that way and freak out when I go through the aisles at the grocery store that have things like canned spaghetti sauce. It is hard for me to grasp that MOST people don’t even make their own spaghetti sauce, or that they eat mac and cheese from a box (I still have never eaten that nor do I want to!). I just don’t get it. People always ask me why I am able to stay healthy and thin. I tell them that I don’t eat processed food and that I stay active. They look at me like they were hoping I’d give them some crazy diet strategy that I’m using. It’s not about dieting. It’s about fresh food made from scratch, eating proper portions, and living a healthy lifestyle. Kudos to you for getting this and following through! I’ll definitely continue reading this series that you’ve started!

  11. my husband and i watched FOK about two weeks ago, and we’ve been making a lot of changes since then. it’s been crazy the amount our eyes have been opened and how just reading labels on the food you buy can bring such knowledge.

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